Us v. Them

By Troy McKinney, a lawyer’s lawyer (in fact, my lawyer), a few of the differences between prosecutors and defenders:

They take away people’s lives.
We give people their lives back.

They break up familles.
We help families stay together.

They cause and maximize pain.
We prevent or minimize pain.

They judge.
We forgive.

Their solutions are usually destructive.
Our solutions are usually constructive.

They cause kids to visit parents in prison.
We prefer that kids and parents visit at home.

They hear a story and look for the worst in people.
We hear a story and look for the best in people.

And, of course, the #1 difference (even though it is last here):

They prosecute the innocent.
We defend the innocent.

0 responses to “Us v. Them”

  1. Don’t you think McKinney is being a tad rough. I know that the DA’s office isn’t a bunch of angels but it’s not like they are the spawn of Satan either. Well not that I know of anyway.
    What I would like to see is what someone who has been on both sides, say former ADA now criminal defense lawyer (or possibly ,though I think rarer, criminal defense lawyer turned ADA) seems to think about prosecutors and defenders.
    I admire McKinney’s passion and yours as well in advocating your client’s rights. And that your ardent advocacy of them deserves praise but don’t DAs and ADAs have clients too – the ‘People’?

  2. Shannon:

    There are some very fine assistant DA’s who recognize the enormity of the power they yield and use it responsibly. There are also many who do not fit that mold – usually from the lack of real world experiences and the wisdom that comes with it.

    My views on this are not meant as an attack on any ADA — good or bad. They are meant as my perception of the different roles that are inherent to the majority of those of us involved in the system — on both sides. It is not about the individuals as much as its is about their roles – as I view them.


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